Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Peak Design PRO Team member Al Diaz

Today Peak Design introduces AL DIAZ 
to the Peak Design PRO team.


For Miami photojournalist Al Diaz, a camera is not just a piece of equipment that he carries with him. It’s an appendage, a body part that he never leaves home without.
From NBA Finals and Olympic Games to the devastation of Hurricane Andrew, the coup attempt on Venezuela’s Hugo Chavez, and the catastrophic earthquake in Haiti, he has been there and done that. From President Reagan on through to President Obama, he’s captured them all.
A staff photographer for the Miami Herald since 1983, Diaz has shared numerous awards with his colleagues including a Pulitzer Prize, a regional Emmy, and the McClatchy President’s Award for Journalism Excellence. In 2010 Diaz was awarded a Green Eye Shade Award for sports. Although perfectly at ease shooting bold face names and superstar athletes, Diaz’s visual journalism is at its most poignant when he’s capturing the “common” man and woman. His tender portraits of the homeless, the hungry, and the disenfranchised in Florida won him a Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Award in 2003.
He even once chased down a thief on Rollerblades who stole his camera—as the police arrested the thief, Diaz got “the shot” that made the paper by using his second camera. The physically challenging nature of his work has taken its toll on his body but it has not dampened his sprit. After all these years, he’s still raring to go every morning and is always on the prowl for the next important moment. His cameras and gear sit by his front door.


Favorite Place on Earth? Why?
Fishing off the Florida Keys or Biscayne Bay or working on my home I call Casa Palma.  In the last couple of decades I’ve planted over a dozen varieties of swaying palms, creating my own tropical paradise, where once was a barren piece of property. It helps me recharge my batteries.
Wow, can we visit sometime? Tell us, what was your first ever Camera?
A Mamiya 500DTL, the first 35mm SLR with dual spot/averaging CdS TTL metering. Bought it at Zayre department store as a kid with money earned cutting lawns in the old neighborhood.
Favorite Camera?
The Canon EOS-1D X loaner that I used during the NBA playoffs from Canon Professional Services is the fastest autofocus camera I’ve ever used.
The 1D sure is a beauty… What rigs do you shoot with right now?
Two Canon EOS 1D Mark IV’s and a Canon EOS 5D Mark III.
Most extreme place you’ve shot?
Spent a few days on Popocatepetl, one of the most active volcanoes in Mexico. Photographed geologists from the University of Miami as they placed GPS-equipped sensors to measure tiny but significant changes on the restless 17,802-foot volcano near Mexico City. There’s also the Cerro Negro volcano eruption in Nicaragua. Of course spending several weeks covering the devastating earthquake in Haiti with estimates of over 200,000 people killed was intense. Photographing anything with ash falling from the sky, seismic activity or 200mph winds is extreme to me.
Jeez, that must have been tough.. So what’s your dream photo shoot?
Is this a trick question? My wife will read this. Okay, anything that wins me a Pulitzer or shooting the cover of the Sports Illustrated bathing suit edition. There I said it.
That’s good work if you can get it! What job did you have before being a photographer?
During my summer months in high school I worked at carpentry shops with my father. One summer I built houseboats and almost cut my finger off with a chop saw.
How/when/where do you use Peak Design gear?
Shooting basketball with the flexibility and speed of the Peak Design Leash and Cuff‘s quick-connecting, quick-releasing straps work great. With LeBron James sprinting towards me at 23 mph and flicking the ball faster than an NFL quarterback at 40 mph. The last thing I need is to get tangled up with camera straps or dangling clasps on a fast break. Nothing is around my neck including my credentials. I place them in a Think Tank Photo Credential Holder Tall on my waist belt. At the end of the quarter I reattach the quick-connecting strap faster than any other system I’ve ever used as I sprint off the court to transmit.
Craziest place you’ve used Capture / Leash / Cuff?
It’s crazy to think that in Game 7 of the NBA Finals I sat in front of the best courtside seats in the house that are rumored to have commanded tenths of thousands of dollars per ticket. The Peak Design Leash and Cuff sat right along side me.
Gnarliest injury you’ve sustained in the field?
Dwayne Wade’s sweaty butt cheeks landed on my face during the NBA playoffs. My neck was sore for days.
Have you washed your face yet? Did you take pictures? Can we see?
Not yet! Of course, sunny side up.
If you weren’t a badass photographer, you’d definitely be a badass…
My wife Cindy and I restored two historic Old Spanish architectural style homes from the 1920’s. Our efforts were featured twice on Home and Garden Television. If I were not a photojournalist I’d be rock ‘n’ rollin with Vanilla Ice renovating homes on a Vanilla Ice Project, probably short a few fingers.


Sunday, July 21, 2013

The long awaited One Legged Things have arrived...

PRESS RELEASE - The new 3LT One Legged Things have ARRIVED!

The long awaited One Legged Things have arrived...

3 Legged Thing is proud to announce the launch of the much anticipated One Legged Thing Monopod Range. It's been a couple of years since we had a monopod available, not because we didn't want one, but simply because we wanted to do it right, and technology has moved on a long way since the launch of our first ever "Bob".

With a serious amount of help from our endorsed professionals, and particular thanks to AFP Photographer Leon Neal who managed to destroy a number of our earlier incarnations with no small amount of bizarre experiments and rugged determination, 3LThave developed three brand new monopods for the world at large....
The new 3LT PETE is the lightest and most rugged of our new range...

Pete - 3 Section Professional Carbon Fiber Monopod

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Our flagship monopod, Pete is designed with the big lens users in mind. From sports photographers to wildlife shooters, Pete is the largest monopod we make, and also the lightest! Weighing in at an astonishing 450g, and constructed of rigid 10-core Stealth Carbon Fiber, and hardened, anodised Magnesium Alloy, the 3LT Pete is as robust as he is stylish and as stable as he is light-weight.
Sid is an alloy replica of our Carbon mono, Pete...

Sid - 3 Section Professional Magnesium Alloy Monopod

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Our alloy monopod, Sid is an exact replica of his carbon brother, Pete. Weighing just 82g more at a very respectable 532g, Sid was designed for those photographers on a lower budget, or those who favour alloy to carbon fiber. With all the same functions and features, Sid is a brilliant choice for photographers of all levels.
Bob is the ultimate travel monopod, and will fit in your hand luggage!

Bob - 5 Section Professional Carbon Fiber Travel Monopod

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Bob is the smallest and also the tallest of our One Legged Things, and is the second incarnation of our original travel monopod - but that's where the similarity to his predecessor ends. Bob 2 is just 450mm long when folded, and extends to a massive 1.7m. With five leg sections, including our unique 10 core Stealth Carbon Fiber top section, Bob is ideal for traveling photographers with limited weight and size allowances.

Case not dismissed

Many of our competitors make a good monopod - that goes without saying, but we make a great monopod (or three) and we include a funky, padded and very versatile bag into the equation. Lined to fully protect your magnificent monopod, and with room enough for a head inside, it also comes with pockets for memory cards and spare underpants. The 1LT case comes complete with full length zip for easy extraction and stowage, D-rings for connecting to other devices and bags, rugged cord zips for easy use on cold days when you may need gloves, a shoulder strap and a comfortable (and rather groovy) carry handle.
"The new carbon fiber monopods from 3 Legged Thing show a leap forward in low weight and solid stability.  Having had the chance to get my hands on Boband Pete, I've found they've been perfect for every situation that I've thrown at them.  Pete has proven particularly useful with an above-normal height, ridiculously low weight that has to be handled to be believed and really rigid stability, capable of handling every lens that I've thrown at it so far.  I've ditched every other camera support option for these bad boys" Leon Neal, AFP

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Our monopods are finished to exquisite detail, with hardened, anodised, aircraft-grade Magnesium Alloy, capable of surviving the toughest of conditions and the harshest of temperatures. The strap is tethered to a copper-anodised swivel, which spins freely around the 32mm, 10-core Stealth Carbon Fiber Tubing.
We only use the highest quality stainless steel for our connection screws. Our new monopods feature a spring loaded multi functional mounting point, with both 3/8" thread and a recessed 1/4" thread for direct connection to a camera. This thread also enables us to dock ourmonopods with our tripods, to form huge lighting stands and stabilised monopodplatforms (up to 13 feet) - a feature entirely unique to 3LT.
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Friday, July 5, 2013

U Pick’em Think Tank Photo Contest 2013!

By Al Diaz 

U Pick’em Think Tank Photo Contest 2013!

The King of Hoops, LeBron James, comes crashing down with a monster slam. Swoosh! The sound is deafening from the rip roar of the crowd and the whir of camera motor drives capturing a multitude of images.

Shooting 10 or more frames per second on the Canon 1DX or the Nikon D4 will get you a lot of frames to choose from.

Usually, one frame captures that decisive moment. Then there are times while breezing through an edit you stop dead in your tracks. Suddenly, you are indecisive. Which frame, which crop, which moment looks better from two camera positions, the pole remote camera under the basket or the one from your hand held camera at your court position?

You’ve got three minutes before the sports front deadline. The Heat are in the lead during Game 4 of the NBA Finals between the Miami Heat and the San Antonio Spurs.

Tell us which one of the top four photographs you would select to publish and why?

Comment on my blog to enter the contest for a chance to win Think Tank Photo and Peak Design products!  

First place wins: 

Second place wins: 

Third place wins: 

The contest is now closed. The list of entrants, comments and a final count of the image with the most votes is being compiled. Please be patient, I'll announce the winners soon!

A random winner will be selected on July 31, 2013. Free shipping within the US mainland. All others must pay the postage through my PayPal account. 

Please add your email to the comments so I know exactly who to contact when you win! Don't forget to check back at the end of the month to read what everyone has to say.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Capture Coral Gables Photography Exhibit Opening Night is Friday, July 5 , 6-9pm

Underwater portrait of Books & Books owner, Mitchell Kaplan by Cindy Seip
Underwater portrait of junior golfer Juan Carlos at Coral Gables Country Club Pool by Cindy Seip
Come vote for your favorite photo within each category starting at this Friday's 
opening reception for Capture Coral Gables. The juried exhibit of photographs 
taken within the City of Coral Gables will be on display at the Coral Gables 
Museum July 5th, 6pm-9pm. Free and open to the public.

Help Cindy Seip win the People's Choice category. Two of her underwater 
entries will be on exhibit. Museum visitors are invited to vote for their favorite photo 
within each category. The public's votes, combined with the jurors' votes, will 
determine the 2013 prize winners. The winner of the People's Choice category
and the Juror's Best in Show will receive Leica cameras!

Heart of a Champion: The story of the 2012-13 Miami Heat

By Miami Herald Sports

This book is available for download on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch with iBooks and on your computer with iTunes. Books must be read on an iOS device.

Our commemorative e-Book chronicles the Heat's dominant run to their 3rd NBA championship. Using the exclusive photographs of the Miami Herald and el Nuevo Herald, this dazzling keepsake includes highlights from the season and hundreds of full-color photos. A must-have for all Miami Heat faithful.

Heart of a Champion: The story of the 2012-13 Miami Heat
View In iTunes
  • $4.99
  • Available on iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch.
  • Category: Basketball
  • Published:Jun 29, 2013
  • Publisher: Miami Herald Media Company
  • Seller: Vook INC
  • Print Length: 76 Pages
  • Language: English
  • Requirements: This book requires iBooks 3.0 or later and iOS 4.3 or later. Books can only be viewed using iBooks on an iPad, iPhone (3G or later), or iPod touch (2nd generation or later).

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